Editor’s note: this piece was first published on 14 March 2019. It is being uplifted again in the public interest, following the recent publication on Friday of a less redacted version of the Henriques Report into Operation Midland and the infamous “Nick” aka Carl Beech (on whose behalf Ms Phillimore reported me to the BSB in March 2017, dubbing Beech “a high-profile complainant”!). As those familiar with a number of my previous posts already know, Ms Phillimore’s alliance with Beech’s supporters since May 2016 is a matter of record, as is her association with another notorious false accuser promoted by the execrable Exaro.
After some reflection, I have decided to post this statement. On Monday this week, out of the blue, Bristol County Court e-mailed me an application for an injunction by Bristol family law barrister, Sarah Phillimore of St John’s Chambers.
Phillimore is a very prolific blogger, and user of social media.
It is premature to set out the details of what she alleges against me, which are contested, and which will be dealt with according to established court procedures. I have instructed very experienced solicitors and counsel to represent me, and will be guided by them.
But what is of significant public interest is, firstly, the revelation that she reported me to the police again on 13 January 2019, seemingly because she took exception to my articles detailing her conduct; and, secondly, the draconian nature of the relief which she seeks against me in the civil court. She is seeking to restrain me from posting any publications naming her!
Now that raises core Article 10 issues. Phillimore is a public campaigner and writer who, since May 2016, has been attacking me liberally using her Twitter accounts as well on various websites which she operates. She has also posted a number of veiled threats directed at me, which both I and my legal advisers considered menacing.
Early in 2017, seemingly encouraged by others, she went to the police about me, which as you can imagine I found extremely threatening. My legal advisers at the time thought her conduct was entirely unnecessary. When the police decided not to take any action against me, she then posted a bitter and petulant blog bemoaning her lot.
Last year, she was involved in a lecture series in which she attacked me directly, as well as using social media to crowdfund costs to sue me.
As a freelance writer and journalist, I find her implacable animosity towards me, evinced in her continual hostile conduct – including her latest attacks – inexplicable and intolerable. It leaves me with no choice but to contest her civil claim, which is unfounded, robustly.
Needless to say, I have received no request from the police to interview me about her recent allegations, which are entirely without merit.
There cannot be one law of free speech for her, and another for me.
I would add that, as a freelance journalist and writer, I take very seriously the codes that apply to our trade. I wish to state for the record that Phillimore made no takedown requests to me, though she has had my personal e-mail address since January 2017.
Nor has she sent me any Pre-Action Protocol Letter, as required by the Civil Procedure Rules.
I consider her latest offensive against me to be wholly unreasonable and unprincipled.